To serve our 3.3 million members who transact with Central Provident Fund Board (CFPB) more than 43 million times yearly, we leverage on IT to transform and proliferate our services. We introduced my cpf to meet and continually exceed customers’ expections.
The objectives of my cpf are to:
a) Empower customers to make informed decisions about their CPF savings;
b) Provide convenient access to personalised information in a cost-effective manner;
c) Transit customers from manual service to self-service;
d) Deliver service in a customer-centric rather than an organisation-centric manner.
my cpf is a holistic customer service framework developed with citizens’ inputs that leverages on ICT to educate and empower Singaporeans to plan for a secure retirement. It addresses the different needs of our customers. We make use of the latest technology to develop a host of customised and cost-effective delivery channels. Citizens can self-serve via multiple channels and transact 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (24 x 7) regardless of their location, anytime, anywhere, using their preferred platform.
By being innovative in its ICT use, my cpf is able to address the needs of customers at the opposite extreme of IT savviness. Those constantly on the move and at the forefront of IT adoption can make use of our mobile and e-services wherever they are. This group of self-helping customers will relieve our staff from dealing with mundane transactions, thus allowing them to focus on more complex issues and helping those who are not e-savvy.
The Board’s fundamental objective is to provide a framework of useful information, tools and appropriate channels to help our customers plan for a secure retirement. my cpf was thus launched to address the diverse needs of our customers distributed at both extremes of the IT maturity spectrum and to provide a range of services that fit our customer profiles.
The Board also takes into account Singapore’s high internet penetration rate and strong economic and social growth, as these have produced an increasingly sophisticated population that desires value-added public services.
Today, 96.8% of the Board’s transactions are performed online. E-transactions have risen from 7 million in 2002 to 43 million in 2009 This reflects the successful shift in preferred service channel from manual to electronic which costs significantly less. (See Annex A- Percentage of Incoming Transactions Performed Electronically). In our quest to leverage on IT to bring about a more seamless and comfortable service experience, we have taken pains to ensure that our less IT-savvy customers are not left behind even as service innovations are introduced. For example, users can navigate our website at a click of the mouse to adjust the font size of the text (Increase / Decrease Font Size Feature) and have all text mechanically read aloud on our website (Read Aloud Feature). (See Annex B - Text Adjustment and Read Aloud Feature).
Despite a sharp reduction of service counters from 89 in 2002 to 37 in 2009, the customers’ overall satisfaction with the Board’s services has risen from 95.9% to 98.8% respectively (See Annex C - Overall Customer Satisfaction Level). We also successfully cut our cost from $29.90 in 2002 to $0.11 (See Annex D - Cost of Service Comparison) today with the bulk of our transactions performed via the e-channels. This shows that my cpf service initiatives are well-received and the approaches rightly pitched for the less IT-savvy customer segment.
“Different Strokes for Different Folks” approach leverages on innovative technologies to ensure there is an e-channel for every Singaporean, regardless of IT savviness, thus helping to enlarge the e-community. (See Annex E - Different Strokes for Different Folks). For the e-savvy, we have a suite of personalised and interactive portal services using Web 2.0 technologies. For the busy and on-the-move, we provide mobile (mPAL , Short Message Service and SingPass Mobile) services. For the young, we use gaming technology to reach out to them in a fun and educational way. We also use IT creatively to help customers who are technologically-challenged by Bridging the Digital Divide. For example, we introduced biometric authentication for the elderly and remote online access (e-Helpdesk) to help those with difficulties using our e-services.
e-lobby and e-Ambassador: We proliferated a bank of computers (e-counters) in our office premises (e-lobbies) and stationed e-Ambassadors (Customer Service Officers, CSOs) to help customers to individually access information and perform transactions online. Once customers realised the convenience of self-service, the demand for online services sky-rocketed. E-transaction rates spiked by 100% from 8 million in 2003 to 16 million by 2004 and exceeds 43 million today.
Biometric e-counter: Biometric e-counter is an alternative delivery channel created to help elderly customers who typically have difficulty remembering their password (SingPass) to access their CPF accounts. With biometric e-counter, their identity is authenticated using their fingerprint and NRIC .
Islandwide Kiosks: To extend our e-services to customers without internet access, we tapped on over 1,000 islandwide kiosks managed by private vendors instead of setting up our own network of kiosks. By availing CPF services through AXS Stations , usage soared 44 times, from 9,950 in 2005 to 438,000 in 2009. Following the success of AXS, we extended CPF services through Self-service Automated Machines (SAM) in 2009 and iNETs kiosks in 2010.
iCARE (CRMS): The Customer Relationship Management System (CRMS), known as iCARE, is the Board’s central repository of customers’ information. iCARE enables the seamless sharing of customers’ information and the status of transactions across more than 30 departments in the organisation. With iCARE, we better understand customers’ needs through customer profiling, and can provide personalised service and individually customised marketing of key CPF messages.
m-Ambassador service: The m-Ambassador service allows our CSOs to e-transact on our customers’ behalf using Ultra Mobile Personal Computers (UMPCs) which ride on the ubiquitous wireless network. By integrating face-to-face transactions with e-transactions, we have extended our service reach beyond our Service Centres, right into the heartlands . This service is particularly helpful to customers who are immobile and living on their own.
e-Helpdesk: Customers can get real-time assistance either via online or the telephone when they encounter difficulties in using CPF e-services.
My e-Concierge: My e-Concierge is a simplified online form that allows customers to specify their requests. Customers can also use it when they are unable to locate the required online transaction or form.
Tell Us Once : Tell Us Once service brings convenience to our customers as personal information like bank details needs only to be provided once. The bank account number is displayed automatically each time the customer uses an online application that requires his bank account number. This minimises the need for the customer to remember this information.
Enhanced Ask Us: Customers can have their queries answered by using Ask Us, an intelligent search engine that recognises natural language. This is an easy and convenient FAQ tool for our customers to use. On average, the Board receives a monthly count of 112,380 queries.
Social and New Interactive Media: IM$avvy , a financial planning portal run by CPFB, with support from MoneySENSE , to extend public education. To attract and engage younger CPF customers, we developed online quizzes such as “IM$avvy Financial Literacy Quiz” and “CPF Savviness Index (CSI) Quiz” that received over 95,000 entries by the public. The widely popular social media channels like Facebook and Twitter were also tapped on to broadcast relevant CPF and useful financial information and tips. Todate, we attracted more than 16,000 Facebook fans and 600 Twitter followers.
Mobile Application: The application allows the growing number of iPhone users to compute their CPF contribution amount by month using the CPF Contribution Calculator (launched in September 2010), to check their CPF account balances and transactions (to be launched before end of 2010), and eventually even accessing our intelligent FAQ (Ask Us) via iPhone.
FOOTNOTES: (mPAL) Mobile Personal Auto-Link : A service for employers to submit their CPF contribution details for their employees using a mobile phone.
SingPass, otherwise termed as Singapore Personal Access, is the login PIN to access e-services at government websites. SingPass is the online equivalent of the National Registration Identity Card (NRIC). More information refer to:http://mycpf.cpf.gov.sg/CPF/News/News Release/NR_25Feb2003.htm.
SingPass Mobile Service allows customers to use SingPass as an authentication method to access mPAL – my cpf. Customers can use their SingPass to check their account balance on the move.
National Registration Identity Card (NRIC).
AXS is a solution provider and operator of an Electronic Service Delivery Network (ESDN), a delivery platform with over 650 AXS Stations strategically located islandwide to provide AXS users with convenient access to more than 120 services.http://www.axs.com.sg/phpweb/consumer/index.php.
SAM is a 24-hour automated post office managed by Singapore Post, itself having a wide network of over 60 post offices located throughout Singapore. There are over 308 SAMs islandwide that allow users to weigh their mail packages, purchase stamps, pay off bills and fines and make CPF transactions,etc.http://www.singpost.com.sg/SAM/sam_services.htm.
iNETS Kiosk is a self-service payment kiosk which provides a wide range of services for consumers such as purchase and top-up of various Network for Electronic Transfers (NETS) transactions (such as NETS FlashPay card and NETS CashCard), bill payment, ticket payment and government services, etc. The 85 kiosks are located at locations convenient and accessible to all. http://www.nets.com.sg/inets/index.php
IM$avvy taps on the growing popularity of the new media and Web 2.0 technologies to provide a platform for the public to network and gain knowledge on how to save and plan for their future. IM$avvy currently receives more than 1 million page hits monthly.
MoneySENSE is a national financial education programme launched by Mr. Lee Hsien Loong, then Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the MAS on 16 October 2003. MoneySENSE brings together industry and public sector initiatives to enhance the basic financial literacy of consumers. http://www.moneysense.gov.sg
CPFB’s target market is our CPF members. Essentially, everyone who maintains an account with the Board is our customer. Hence our customer base is as large as 3.31 million as at March 2010.
CPFB’s challenge is therefore to deliver services to an aging but increasingly sophisticated population. Technologically, Singapore has a high internet penetration rate and citizens increasingly want more services delivered online. However, from our listening posts (surveys, focus groups, etc.), we also know that there is a need to address the needs of citizens who are struggling to keep up. The need to address these different, overlapping needs led to the launch of my cpf.
my cpf covers every segment of the population by providing a variety of channels based on our “Different Strokes for Different Folks” approach to address different needs. We allow Citizens to get the information they need to make informed decisions about their retirement planning at different life stages, using their preferred mode.
In terms of external recognition, the my cpf portal (www.cpf.gov.sg) won the outstanding award for the inaugural Web Excellence Awards, coming in top for Most User-Friendly Website, Best Content Presentation Website and Best E-Service Delivery Website.
my cpf also consistently been ranked Top by Hitwise for Singapore users accessing Singapore government, insurance and banking sites. In fact, my cpf portal was No.1 in terms of hit rate for Jul – Dec 2009 (Insurance category). See Annex F(1) and Annex F(2) - Top Hits for Singapore Users accessing Singapore government, insurance and banking sites. You may refer Annex G - Accenture Annual e-government reports and other international benchmarking studies, Annex H - Feedback from Our Customers and Annex I - Full list of awards CPFB has won in the last three years (Year 2008 -2010).